An audio recording ofJosé Julio Sarria performing at the Black Cat, a bohemian bar with a largely gay clientele. This recording was included on a comedy record called "No Camping" (Velvet Records, 1962). Sarria was locally famous for his opera parodies, which he would perform in drag at the Black Cat. He later became the first LGBTQ person to run for office in the United States, in a 1961 bid for a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Sarria also founded the Imperial Court System, a queer charitable organization known for the elaborate courtly titles and pageantry adopted by its members. His persona within the Imperial Court was Empress José I, the Widow Norton.
From the GLBT Historical Society, José Sarria papers (#1996-01). Copyright status unknown. This work may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). This work is accessible for purposes of education and research. Transmission or reproduction of works protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owner. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any information or questions regarding rights to the content. The GLBT Historical Society Take-Down Policy is available at https://www.glbthistory.org/takedown. Permission to publish or reproduce is required.